Royal Caribbean InternationalEnchantment the Seas ReviewWestern CaribbeanMandy Severt
Number of Cruises: 1
Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean
Ship: Enchantment of the Seas
Sailing Date: August 13th, 2007
Itinerary: NOT FOUND
Royal Caribbean International
Enchantment of the Seas Cruise Review
This being my first
cruise, I can honestly say it was beyond anything I ever imagined. Reading
through the numerous reviews and filtering the opinions of friends had us a
little excited and weary at the same time. My husband and I work all the time so
we were looking forward to our first cruise, and being able to get away from it
all. We had such a small time frame with our jobs that we ended up booking a 5
night, when we really wanted a 7 night. Our Western Caribbean Cruise on the
beautiful Enchantment of the Seas, took us from Port Everglades in Ft.
Lauderdale, on to Key West, Cozumel, and Coco Cay Bahamas.
A little about Ft. Lauderdale:
Ft. Lauderdale is absolutely gorgeous. My husband had been there when he was much younger and this was my first time. We flew down from Georgia a day early to get settled into the city and stayed at the Hyatt Regency Pier 66. The Hyatt is directly across the street from the pier. We could see the Enchantment from our balcony tower room. It was parked there the day before in the port and we loved being able to see it and enjoy the gorgeous ocean and marina views. Ft. Lauderdale is like no other beach town. It is a major city with many things to do and see. The sights from our balcony were worth every bit of the stay we had there, and I would rate it a 5 star room. There are lots of little inlets that lead to the ocean/marina and houses galore. Everyone has a boat in this city, otherwise it would be hard to get around.
We arrived at the port at 1:45pm and were told to arrive no earlier. We had heard others say that you could board at 12pm or so, but this is not true, or at least no one did this day. When you get out of your taxi, they immediately take and check your luggage prior to getting on the ship. We were not allowed to carry it on ourselves which made us nervous. We saw so many bags just sitting idle on numerous carts, so we made sure and tipped our baggage guy 20 bucks and said a prayer that our luggage would make it on the ship safely. Everything went very smoothly when getting on the ship, we only waited about 15 minutes and got through the line and they set up our sea pass cards, took a security picture, and we walked on the ship.
The Beautiful Enchantment:
Upon walking aboard, we saw the magnificent Centrum, which is truly breathtaking. We were so excited and could see all the others passengers with the same looks on their faces. The crew is set to go as soon as you get on the ship. People already were eating and had drinks in their hands. but we couldn't wait to see our room so we hurriedly took the stairs up to Deck 7.
Our Balcony Room 7548:
I must say it was not as small as people say it is. I was very relieved to see that we had plenty of room. I enjoyed having a balcony and would do it again every time. There are nooks and crannies, drawers, doors, shelves and closets. There is no reason to complain at all here. Our stuff fit wonderfully and we had 6 bags, yes 6 bags total. We had a big couch that could fold out and sleep 2 if need be. Our queen size bed was plush and slept like a cloud with the white down pillows and bedding. As a matter of fact, it was hard getting out of it, it was so comfy.
The bathroom was fine.
There is a medicine cabinet that fit all of our toiletries and towels to last
you for weeks. The shower had awesome water pressure and our toilet was higher
than most which made us want to change ours at home. After checking our room out
it was then time to go see the rest of the ship, Upon leaving our room we met
our stateroom attendant “Earl” who was there for our every need. We never once
didn’t see him outside our door. He was on top of everything down to the mints
on the pillows.
The Schooner Bar:
This being the first place we congregated, we met our bartender "Ambrose" he was by far the most crafty and sincere bartender we found. This is a small bar but became our favorite. It was decorated with wood and brass portholes and a big piano that we would enjoy the whole time. Now don't get me wrong, there are about 10 other bars possibly more on the ship but this one was just our favorite. Later on we would meet "Alfredo" who also made some awesome drinks here as well. Make sure you stop by here, if you tip them well they will take care of you & surprise you on your check.
The Windjammer Marketplace:
This is a huge buffet, I read a couple of reviews that rated this mediocre which stunned us! It was exceptional! Anything you can think of they have here. We never once went there and didn’t like it, and it was always open. I am a vegetarian, and it more than suited my liking. My husband is not however and he raved and raved. We met the manager here and he always checked on us and made sure that everyone was happy, there wasn’t a time in which we went there and he wasn't there visiting tables and making sure everything was superb. The only thing we didn’t like was there was only one drink station. The Windjammer is great in size, and if you found a seat farther away, you had to walk a great distance to fill up your drink cup, which were small in size.
The Dining Room:
We were scheduled to have 2nd seating at 8:30 at table 94. We decided that the Windjammer was so great, that we only went to the dining room one night, which was our second night, as we were told this is where we could meet the Captain at the Captain's Dinner. It was Formal night and my husband and I dressed to the nines in black and white tie. However upon walking in there was no table 94, we had to ask a waiter where to sit, so he preceded to sit us at table 96 which was in the farthest corner possible by the kitchen door. He then asks us like children, "Where were you on the first night?" However, it was a table for two, just no view of anything at all except the hurrying of waiters rushing by. We were greeted very nicely by the assistant waiter "Rosemary" who was very sweet and turned around the sourness of our waiter. We ordered a bottle of Riesling, in which the price was no where near the quality. We are big wine drinkers and when it arrived it came as a miniature bottle, which was mediocre for the price we paid. We were proceeded with a very small menu, which mainly consisted of meat. I am a vegetarian and the only option I had for the main course was eggplant, which I'm not that crazy about. So I asked our waiter, I think his name was "David" if he could make a vegetable plate and he proceeded to tell me they couldn't, so I just ordered a child’s spaghetti instead. I was pretty disappointed, especially when I found out that we missed meeting the captain because it had already happened earlier in the night before the first seating. Another waiter then managed to breeze by me with a red sauce and spilled it on my white dress. I was then just ready to leave the dining room, but "Rosemary" saved the night, she came back in seconds with seltzer water and it lightened up the stain. Of course we hadn't had pictures made yet, but the photographer was nice enough to strategically place my husbands hands over the stain, so it wouldn't show in the pictures. "Rosemary" was the only one who received a tip that night. We didn't return to the dining room.
Chops was wonderful. It was by reservation only and we finally got a call from being on the waiting list on the 4th night. We went down and were seated at a table for two by the window. It was excellent. It only cost 20 dollars a head. In Atlanta we never get out of Chops for under 200.00. They actually made me a wonderful vegetable plate. I had steamed asparagus with hollandaise sauce, whipped mashed potatoes, and snow peas. My husband ordered a steak to his perfection and could cut it with a fork. We were more than pleased.
The Pool Areas:
The pools were kept very clean and were crowded but there was plenty of room to soak. We only ordered a couple of drinks from the pool bar in which they had a minute teaspoon of alcohol and even when asked to make them stronger with a ten dollar bill they refused. Now by no means are we alcoholics, but they tasted like virgin drinks, and heard the same things from many other passengers. Ambrose and Alfredo made our drinks in which we took to the pool from then on out. They were happy to receive our tips. We loved the adult atrium pool. It was more relaxing being around adults. There are times when you don’t want someone doing cannonballs by your pool chair. This is a great place where that doesn’t happen. The hot tubs were wonderful. And had the smell of chlorine which was nice. There is a Solarium Café where you can get pizza, hotdogs, hamburgers, and fries. They are wonderful except the girl working there couldn’t speak English. I had to point to things so she could understand., As did the rest of line. This was the only encounter we had on the whole ship with communication so I think we were pretty lucky.
The Ports Of Call:
The first port was Key West. We had a wonderful time. We didn’t book an excursion, we just wanted to do our own thing. We walked around town which has a lot of history to it. There are museums and art exhibits and lots of shopping. We took many pictures at this port showing off the beauty of the town. We just so happened to meet a retired photographer from Hollywood who was also on our ship, who took our pictures the whole day, which was amazing. We were thrilled with the photos we got from him. We went to Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville and drank some real exceptional margaritas that will sneak up on you in a quick manner. After this we went directly back to the ship and had to take a nap. We both laughed because we had never had margaritas like that before.
Cozumel was a disappointment to me, only because I have been spoiled with going to Cancun before. I had drummed up this beautiful beach vision in my head which I had experienced there, and here its no where near that. The weather was bad, hurricane Dean was on its way so it was really windy and overcast. The town had a really bad smell like Cancun did, but great shopping. Be careful there are a lot of beggars and it is a very touristy but poor town. We ate at an authentic Mexican restaurant, but I had much better in Cancun. I guess maybe my expectations were too high at this port. My husband had never been to Mexico before, and I had told him so many wonderful things about Cancun that I think it was a let down for both of us.
Coco Cay, Bahamas:
Coco Cay is a private island owned by Royal Caribbean International. It is stunningly beautiful and this was one of my favorite places. This is where we enjoyed our beach time. We did a snorkel excursion here and it was definitely worth the 60.00 for both of us. We saw tons of fish and shipwrecks, sponges, and jellyfish. I was only stung once, so I did pretty good. Since it’s a private island, we were the only ones there. The crew off the boat actually tenders there before we do and sets up all the food and drinks beforehand. The little bars and shops are huts and are painted kind of bright and gaudy, but I guess they wanted to make it tropical. The tender boat took about an hour to load us and get us there even though we were in clear sight of the island. We had to stand in a long line to get on the tenders and people were getting restless and pushing which was pretty childlike, but it was worth that to get to that piece of paradise. We were there most of the day and the drinks were expensive, since our normal bartenders weren’t there. You can use your sea pass card for everything there which was nice. We rented lockers to put our stuff in while we snorkeled which was great. We were wondering how we were going keep our stuff safe while on the island snorkeling, so that worked out beautiful. We got a lot of sun due to perfect weather here and rode the tender back which took about and hour and a half to get back to the boat. My husband and I didn’t get to sit down because they overcrowded the tender, This was the only downside. I got seasick from the tender and had to go lay down, but felt better being back on our ship.
We didn’t go to a lot of the shows due to being so tired from getting up early. We usually went to bed at about 12:00 midnight so we missed a lot of them. However there is a TV in your stateroom that replays all the shows and entertainment so we enjoyed watching what we missed out on. I know that sounds cheesy but it was entertaining just watching them on TV. We bought a lot of our pictures they took of us on the ship and they were really good quality. They were a little high, but hey they are your memories!
Getting off the ship:
The only thing bad about the ship was leaving it. We hated to go. “ Earl” allowed us to stay in our stateroom until the last minute which was at 8:45. Then we had to go by colors and floors. We loaded up our luggage the night before and set it out but we knew “Earl“ would take care of it. When we went to our allotted floor for waiting, it took forever. We waited two hours in the Bolero lounge, until our color was called. When it was finally called we then had to stand in line to get off the ship which took about another 30 minutes. That was a huge bummer. But everything about leaving is I guess.
We loved everything about the ship and our vacation and are already planning to take another RC Cruise in May of 2008 porting from San Juan, Puerto Rico. We will more than likely even cruise on the Enchantment again as well. It was one beautiful ship with memories that will last us a lifetime.